Don Polec's World Archive
"Don Polec's World" airs Monday on Action News at 6:00 and Friday and Sunday on Action News at 11:00. Here is some additional information about recent stories Don has covered.
(aired 08.27.06 11pm)
The abstract artworks in Adrian Rodriguez's photography portfolio never fail to intrigue those who see them. "That's beautiful... Looks like a swirl of colors... They're interesting... How were they made?" Well the answer to that is with conscientious determination in the makeshift photography studio of his Glenside home. A room that also serves another more essential purpose and whose familiar waters serve as the canvas for the creative works he calls toilygraphs... images of swirling colors in his bathroom commode. Adrian Rodriguez\Toilyographer: "Just regular store bought food color dyes that I use. That was in my earlier series. In my later series I used acrylic paints... and I thought it would be intriguing to see if I could get an image out. I was taking a photography course at Montgomery County Community College and the one course was "Unique Vantage Points". That's a different kind of art, definitely. It takes a lot of pictures to get one picture out of it. The first series, it took me 4 rolls to get 3 shots." Along with the fact that he's already sold some of his works for 300 dollars at local art festivals, making them something of a hot commodity that he will continue to produce in the only bathroom his home has. A situation which in it's own way lends the process a unique intensity and sense of artistic urgency...
BOOTSIES GOURMET FAST FOOD
(aired 08.21.06 6pm)
For those who don't want to be seen by their country club collegues eating such low-class blue collar gruel as a "hot dog", (or even for the rest of us who are in the mood for a real taste treat) the newly opened "bootsies" fast food eatery offers Hot dogs and Hamburgers made out of pricey and gourmet Kobe Beef.
Top shelf gourmet Hot dogs: $6; Hamburgers $11. (sort of like using caviar to mix into your tuna salad, I know, but the taste is terrific) Other gourmet meats offered are buffalo, ostrich, Black Angus, rabbit and veal, venison, and wild boar. (rumor is he's looking into fries made with potatoes grown in moon dust, but that's unconfirmed)
Bootsies is located at 38 S. 19th Street, Phila. PA 19103. Phone 215-988-0089 or visit on the web by CLICKING HERE.
(aired 08.20.06 11pm)
The milk stools are for sale.... CHEAP... At one York County dairy farm... They don't need them anymore since they have ROBOTS milking the cows... Not your standard issue C3PO humanoid, but a mechanized milking machine setup that gets the job done with NO human input.
The cows walk into the stall at THEIR convenience... (cuz their daily planner is usually so packed) and while they get candy and other tasty bribes, the robot arms sanitize the udders and use laser targeting technology to latch the nozzles onto the teats.
Then it's turn on the spigots for some grade A homogonized, and it's as simple as that. One of only about a dozen farms in the country to use this technique.
The Hope Acres Farms, 2680 Delta Road, Brogue, PA 17309, gives tours to visitors to marvel at this wonder of bovine automation. RESERVATIONS REQUIRED!! Call 800-293-1054 or 717 927-9944 for info. Visit their website by CLICKING HERE.
They are the most high maintenance domestic animal there is and any dairy farmer can tell you why. "We had 200 dairy cows and it took 6 people to milk them twice a day... And no days off." But it's a labor-intensive ordeal that Hope Acres in York County has largely been able to eliminate, ever since they started having their 200 Jersey heifers milked by robots. "They are milked 24 hours a day at their convenience with no human intervention." One of only about a dozen dairy farms in the country to have a completely automated milking system, that sanitizes the udders, uses laser targeting to latch onto the ol' lactose spigots, and get the whole job finished faster than a farmer would be able to even find his milk pail. "Each cow determines when they want to go in and get milked. Entirely automated. Most of the time there's no one in the barn at all." Freeing up the staff to conduct guided tours for visitors to the most advanced and cushiest cow barn they're ever likely to see. "Cows will produce more milk when they're comfortable." Their laid back nature no doubt stemming from digs that are the epitome of livestock luxury. With automatic motion activated back massagers and waste scrapers that continually sweep those annoying cow pies off the soft rubber coated floor. Aaron Heindel\Hope Acres Dairy Farm: "Cows have the same problems humans do with arthritis so by putting rubber on the floor, it helps protect their joints." A concern that is the reason the cows recline on what amounts to a bovine waterbed. "There's actually rubber filled with a liquid substance so they're laying in comfort. We're all about cow comfort. We want people to know that farmers do treat their animals properly." That leads to an animal that's more relaxed and accepting of the cold hand of technology... for the most party anyway.
(aired 08.18.06 6pm)
At last the most widespread health affliction in the history of the human race has a cure!
At least that's the claim of inventor Philip Ehlinger and his wife Michele who have developed a sure fire reliable cure for the hiccups. In the form of a cup. That will stop the hic. And is called a Hic-cup. (wow, the synergy of all this gives me goosebumps... but, that's another condition for another time).
Simply drink water out of the stainless steel Hic-cup while it's brass handle rests against your temple, and the teeensy electrical charge that is generated by the galvanic response of 2 dissimilar metals in water which, as ANYBODY knows is how a battery works, (anybody that wasn't dozing off during chemistry class like I was, anyway)...
Gives a jolt to the "vagus" nerve that runs from your head, to your diaphragm... The hiccup control center as it were... And STOPS them instantly. Next Project: clammy palms. We'll keep you posted.
Hic-cup info: cost: roughly 25 dollars. Available only over the internet by CLICKING HERE or by calling toll-free: 1-877-HICCUP1.
A Doylestown man who says he's developed a cure for a malady that has plagued mankind for ages. It's an affliction called Singultus that affects millions and for which no cure has been found, although medical science isn't looking very hard either. "I don't think there's much attention being paid to it frankly. Singultus is an underrated problem." Largely because we know it by another name... "Oh, hiccups, oh boy... I get them all the time." Michele Ehlinger\Chronic Hiccuper: "I just found them annoying and wanted them to go away." Which is what led Michele Ehlinger's husband Philip to come up with his breakthrough invention, "The Hic-Cup", that he claims is the world's first reliable cure and certainly a preferable alternative to other remedies. "Put your fingers in your ear... While drinking a glass of water... Or drink upside down... A spoon between your teeth... And sugar under your tongue... There's a lot of stupid cures..." But some of them insightful. Philip Ehlinger\Hic-Cup Inventor: "All the folk cures that were effective all involved Vagus nerve stimulation. The Vagus nerve is the only cranial nerve that doesn't run down the spinal column. Instead it runs down the throat and comes down into the diaphragm. And that's what controls the hiccup reflex arc." That can be disrupted when ordinary tap water added to the stainless steel hic-cup with its brass rod turns it into a rudimentary battery. "A very small micro current is developed between these two dissimilar metals and it ionizes the water. The bioelectric stimulation is below the threshold you can feel. But you can feel the hiccup go away." Using the same chemical-electric principal that starts your car, although battery acid is clearly not a recommended beverage. Available for 25 dollars through their web-site or toll free number the hic cup promises relief to sufferers some of whom, however might still choose to continue seeking their own folk remedy. "I usually try to drink a beer, that usually does it." THAT'S WHAT GIVES YOU THE HICCUPS. "Oh yeah, ha ha."
CELL PHONE TOURS
(aired 8.14.06 6pm)
Just dial up your favorite patriot and hear him give you an audio tour over your cell phone. A new tourist offering costing $9.95 at Independence park, and a free service at Valley Forge are now available. Standard cell phone rates apply. Don't worry, George Washington hasn't figured out how to text yet, so won't have to deal with those charges.
Info: The Constitutional Cell Phone Tour at Independence Park: 215-229-8687 (Leslie Bari 610-639-4880) Valley Forge tour: 1-408-794-2820 (Ann Marie Maher 610-783-1006)
There are many ways to see the sights in Philadelphia, you can see them from a horse drawn carriage, or from a scheduled trolley tour or double-decker bus, but it would be nice to take a tour on your schedule, with one of those listening devices like they give you in an art museum. Well the good news is, you can and you've already got the listening device on you. It's one that we've already been spending a good deal of time listening to on the street which makes it a perfect accompaniment to for historic Philadelphia's Constitutional cell phone tour. And all for roughly 10 dollars and 40 minutes of your cell phone time you can charge the call to your cell account or to a credit card. It's an idea that's being mirrored in Montgomery County with the debut of the Valley Forge cell phone tour, a free service being funded through a corporate grant and the perfect way to supplement the human tour guide.
ICE CREAM TRUCK FOR DOGS
(aired 08.13.06 11pm)
In an inspired move that shows that there's no joy a child can have that shouldn't also be available to a puppy, a Boston business is peddling their Ice-cream-for-dogs from the back of a authentic looking ice cream truck complete with irritating endless jingle and full color pix of frozen treats in the windows.
Jeff Walker and Nora Meiners of Frost Bite Dog Ice Cream (617-216-9087 or 1-866-dogg-day) hope to have a fleet of trucks operating in several East Coast Cities within weeks, serving up 16 appealing flavors of their gourmet treats. (Although, considering where dogs usually stick their noses when they meet another dog, I don't think they're TOO particular about flavor)
For more info visit www.dogicecream.com.
(aired 8-4-06 11pm)
What's the point of a vacation home at the Jersey Shore if you have to spend your time pulling weeds, fertilizing and mowing a lawn? Fred Laquinta has taken a cue from sports stadiums and about a million kid's Easter Baskets and is using artificial grass to green up his Sea Isle City back yard. Completely maintenance free, soft feel, good drainage, doesn't turn brown from the salt air. All the things the Toro mower folks don't want to hear about.
Fred Laquinta: 609-263-6647 Installed by: JM Synthetic Grass. info:Howard Matzner, Andover Communications 201-947-4133 http://jmsyntheticgrass.com/
BIG FREEZE COLD STORAGE
(aired 08.01.06 6pm)
Now THIS is the kind of place you want to be working in during a heat wave... The city's oldest and largest Cold Storage Warehouse... An 8-story tall brick building that is essentially a freezer inside. Stores all sorts of food for the Philadelphia school lunch program and other government agencies, or anybody else who wants to keep anything on ice in the 5-degree temperatures throughout the building. Yikes. Workers have to wear full length down parkas, gloves and wool hats every day of the year to spend an 8 hour shift inside. They can only defrost the buildup of ice on the walls and cooling pipes by hitting them with an axe to knock the snow off. The way I look at it, they've got a gold mine as the city's tallest indoor ski slope, if they just put a little remodeling into the place. Hey, you can have the idea for free. Just give me free lift tickets for August. info: Philadelphia Warehousing and Cold Storage, 500 N. Christopher Columbus Blvd, (the Brick building with the mural of the big American Flag painted on the outside) Philadelphia, PA 19123 215-627-8181
Swizzle Stick Collector
(aired 7-24-06 6pm)
Proving once again that for every object that's made, there's somebody who wants to collect a whole pile of them for no apparent reason, Joe Marshall of Tuckerton, New Jersey is the area's premier swizzle stick collector, not that there's a whole lot of competition for that distinction. The "International Swizzle Stick Collectors Association" boasts only about 75 members worldwide, although any group whose pursuit requires spending a lot of time in bars, does have some advantages. Joe's collection of cocktail stirrers numbers over 3000 with some very rare offerings from Cuba and from some no-longer-there legendary nightspots like the Copacabana and the 500 Club in Atlantic City.
Phone: 609-296-8530 info: firstname.lastname@example.org International Swizzle Stick Collectors Association c/o Ray Hoare P.O. Box 1117 Bellingham, WA 98227-1117
(aired 7-21-06 6pm)
Now this is my idea of appealing retailing. A 6000 square foot candy store that offers every kind of confection you've ever seen or remembered from your childhood. Plus the country's only "make your own chocolate candy bar" facility. You pick your own favorite fillings, and they imbue it into a 5 dollar chocolate bar. Dental plan not included. All this at: The Pier at Caesars, Atlantic City, NJ info: Jamie Hersh 215-731-2000 www.itsugar.com
CROSS COUNTRY WALKER
(aired 7-14-06 11pm)
Now here's this guy, Leonard Johnson, a freelance artist and former teacher, walking across the country. He started in Venice Beach California in March of 2005, sleeping along roadsides in tents and stuff. He is raising money for Katrina victims by charging 25 bucks or so for charcoal sketched portraits that he can knock off in about 10 minutes. So far he's brought in over 4-thousand dollars for the Red Cross. He plans to continue his journey and end up in New York next month. Not bad for a 75 year old eh?
To contribute to his efforts online: www.lejoharts.com cell: 917-657-7392.
Yes Virginia, there are still inspiring people in this world.
- I-5 bridge collapses in Washington
- Boy Scouts approve plan to accept openly gay boys
- Woman convicted in fiance's wedding day death
- Armed robber steals $800 from Northeast Philadelphia bank
- 8 charged in $14M drug operation in SE Pa.
- Missing Skippack student found in North Carolina
- NJ: Caramel-colored rubbing alcohol sold as scotch
- Chase Utley out 2-4 weeks with oblique strain
- Obama to tour Jersey Shore with Gov. Christie
- Ohio kidnap case hero gets year of free McDonald's